Health, motivation, Personal Success, relationships

What Gifts do You Bring?

Do you bring…

  • full attention and presence?
  • judgment and shame?
  • happiness and enthusiasm?
  • fear and anxiety?
  • unconditional love and freedom?

Your spirit permeates your life and your loved ones. What you reap, you will sow.

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Personal Success

Buying Fishing Tackle

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Photo by Gabby Orcutt

Her name was Daisy.

She got blue ice cream.

After she named all the colors of the various dots on the ice cream window (blue, red, orange, green, and purple), I told her parents that she was adorable. I asked her, “How old are you?”

She held three fingers up.

“Wow, you know all of your colors and you jump so high and you’re only three?”

She nodded yes. Not proud, not shy, just being factual.

“My name is Daisy. What is your name?” Her voice was a shiny bell.

“Caroline.”

“How old are you?”

Her parents and I laughed.

“A LOT older than you!”

Her brows furrowed and she asked, “Why can’t you tell me?”

 

And I realized that I have bought into it hook, line and sinker*. Why was I being coy about my age? Because I’m a woman? Because 49 is old?

 

“I’m 49.”

She turned to her ice cream, satisfied. Not judgmental. Not shocked. Simply satisfied.

I watched her spoon blue ice cream into her mouth.

And I thought, I’m 49.  I’m not proud, not shy, just factual.

 

*American idiomatic phrase

 

 

Personal Success, writing

The Key to Writing Great Fiction

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Photo by Paul Brandeo

“The very first thing I tell my students on the first day of a workshop is that good writing is about telling the truth.”

Anne Lamott in Bird by Bird

The truth. It’s clear we want the truth, even in fiction. We can spot a lie within a fiction story instantly.  That character would never do that! And then we get angry. Have you ever watched your favorite TV series and then someone does something completely out of character and it makes you so angry you quit watching? Ahhhh…for the love of ratings!

Great art is about presenting the truth. It has to come honestly from the heart, not from the desire to shock or manipulate emotions or increase your follower count.

Lamott emphasizes throughout her book the importance of allowing the characters to come to you and to reveal themselves to you. She cautions against inserting dialogue, action and plot that doesn’t emanate naturally from the characters. It will sound forced because it IS forced.

I’m not a painter, sculptor, photographer or actor, but I believe this philosophy pertains to all arts.  As a famous sculptor once said,

“…a knot of wood or a block of marble made it seem that a figure was already enclosed there and my work consisted of breaking off all the rough stone that hid it from me”.”\

Auguste Rodin (The Guardian)

Observe. Wait. The truth will reveal itself.

 

 

 

 

relationships

Honesty

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Nothing fake about me!

‘Tis the season!

We receive holiday cards, mostly from friends and family but also the occasional acquaintance.

We received a  card with one of “those” letters in them. You know what I mean, the ones that review the entire year for every family member in 8 very full paragraphs in 8pt font. Everything that happened was fantastic. Each family member is on his/her way to great success.

This card/letter came from a family with whom we don’t have a personal connection. We never speak on the phone, we never meet up. We are not even  Facebook friends. They happen to be real estate agents in the community.

2016 is almost over. I’d like to see some authenticity happen in 2017.

Communications (email, phone, social media, etc.) are time-consuming, both for the sender and the recipient. Wouldn’t it be nice if every attempt at reaching out was genuine? Do you really care to forge a relationship with us? Then be real. Invite us for a meet up. Call. Even an email invitation is acceptable these days.

But please, don’t send a generic “personalized” letter and assume we care. Why should we?